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Foreign Minister Urmas Paet: Estonian Spirit Made Stronger By More People Knowing About Our Language and Literature


No. 344-E

Yesterday at a reception at the Estonian Embassy in Helsinki, Foreign Minister Urmas Paet emphasised that being the theme country for the Helsinki Book Fair is a great honour for Estonia. “This Estonian book festival, complete with music, is one of the biggest Estonian cultural events in Finland and will further deepen our cultural ties and mutual understanding,” he stated.

The foreign minister stated that the Estonian printed word plays an invaluable role in the story of our development.

Estonian literature is familiar and well-known in Finland, since the Estonian printed word has given substance to cultural ties since the Age of Awakening and has helped the cultures become better acquainted with one another. “In recent years the interest that Estonians and Finns feel towards each other’s literature has significantly increased,” said Paet. “The year 2011 could even be considered the year of Estonian literature in Finland, since this year over 20 translations of Estonian books or books about Estonia have been published,” he added.

Foreign Minister Paet thanked everyone who helped to bring Estonia’s literary and music culture over the gulf to Helsinki. “First and foremost I must thank Estonian authors. The fact that we are represented at the book fair by 259 works is a great accomplishment. The translators also deserve tremendous thanks. And thank you also to the musicians, whose works help to bring Estonian melodies to the fair,” he said.

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